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Statistics show over 65$ of children who abuse prescriptions drugs get them for the first time from a family member or friend's medicine cabinet. A former drug addicts says that's why drug take back events are so important to help get prescription drugs out of the house.

Danny Molloy says a lot of times children go into the medicine cabinets looking for drugs because they are curious. He says a lot of music and moves glorify drug use.

Law enforcement agencies across the nation are holding drug take back events Saturday April 30th. You can drop off prescription drugs no questions asked.

Molloy says the take back events will help stop children from getting their hands on prescription drugs that first time and could prevent years of addiction. "I took oxycontin for about six years straight every day which ultimately led to a heroin addiction, I've been to 20 rehabs and five psychiatric units and I've also been arrested and gone to jail," said Molloy.

All of the drug take back events are Saturday from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Several places in Central Alabama are hosting events. To find the closest one to you visit the DEA's website.

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Heroin deaths in the Birmingham area are an all too common problem.

One organization says heroin addiction begins with prescription drug abuse and something needs to be done to control the number of prescriptions written for painkillers.

According to the CDC, Alabama is one southern state that has had the most prescriptions for painkillers.

The Addiction Prevention Coalition says that's a dangerous and deadly problem.

"Prescription drugs and opiates have paved the way for the heroin problem," said Danny Molloy with the Addiction Prevention Coalition.

It's something Molloy knows all too well. He's a former heroin addict whose problem began with abusing prescription painkillers.

"I realized heroin was cheaper and that I could get it anywhere,” said Molloy. “I did heroin for about 5 years."

After a lot of rehab, he's been clean for seven years and is now with the Addiction Prevention Coalition in Birmingham, which educates teens about drug abuse and provides resources for addicts who want to get help.

Molloy says preventing heroin deaths starts in doctor's offices.

"I feel like doctors need more accountability as to what they’re doing,” said Molloy. “Nobody is above the law and we have an opioid epidemic right now."

According to the CDC, Alabama is one of the states leading the nation in prescribing painkillers.

Molloy says it's time for the state to take a serious look at a mandatory Prescription Drug Monitoring Program, which are state-run databases that track prescriptions to prevent over-prescribing.

"Without a monitoring program, it's really hard to detect what doctors are writing what prescriptions,” said Molloy. “There is a difference between use and abuse. Using medication in the proper way, obviously, that's what medication is for but it can slip into addiction."

The Addiction Prevention Coalition goes into area high schools and talks to students about the dangers of drug abuse and addiction, which is how he knows teenagers are battling those things.

"We need to get in front of this thing because now it's a heroin epidemic because everyone is moving from painkillers to heroin,” said Molloy. “Now we’ve got people younger and younger dying. We're seeing it in almost all the high schools that we have our program in. Seventeen high schools and we've met somebody who either does heroin or knows someone who does heroin in the high school."

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